Saturday, May 05, 2007

New Blog for ANC 5C-02

I am in the process of compiling a new blog apart from this campaign blog and will be moving post-election posts from this blog to the new one.

Go to

Friday, February 16, 2007

ANC 5C-02 Neighborhood Meetings

I will hold my next single member district meeting:

Monday, February 19 at 6:30 p.m.
McKinley Technology High School
151 T Street N.E.

Special thanks to Q Street N.E. resident Darren Snell, who arranged for the room at McKinley

■ Attorney Earle Horton will make some remarks on behalf of the Community Academy Public Charter School (“CAPCS”), which intends to renovate the historic Armstrong School located at 1400 First Street, NW (1st and O Street).

■ Please bring your ideas and community concerns

■ We are also looking for block captains to begin building a Neighborhood Watch team to combat crime and establish emergency-readiness

This meeting will be followed at the same location by the
Eckington Civic Association meeting at 7:15 p.m.

■ Alice Thompson, Ward 5 Community Outreach Coordinator, will speak

■ Kelly Cornell of Rails to Trails Conservancy will be discussing the future of the proposed bike trail along the railroad tracks.


Tuesday, February 20, 2007
7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
McKinley Technology High School
151 T Street, N.E.

■ Presentation concerning the National Marathon on March 24 that will take runners down First Street N.W. ― Chris Browne, Greater Washington Sports Alliance
■ Proposed Armstrong School Renovation ―Wendell Butler and Earle Horton
■ Status of St. Martin’s Apartments housing plan before DC Zoning Commission
■ Status of community grants made at 12/06 monthly ANC5C meeting

Friday, January 19, 2007

First 5C-02 Constitutent Meeting is Tomorrow

I am holding my first monthly Single Member District ANC meeting at 11 a.m. this Saturday January 20 at Emery Elementary School (1720 1st Street N.E.).

If you are a resident of 5C-02, then please attend and bring your ideas, community concerns and documented service requests (with tracking numbers).

I will also be looking for block captains to begin building a Neighborhood Watch team (go here for more information).

Special thanks to Ted McGinn, who arranged for the room at Emery to be made available. Ted writes that City Year Young Heroes "
will be starting a community clean up at Noon and we
are all invited to join them. If you only want to come to the meeting that's fine and if you want to join the cleanup that would be outstanding."

Thursday, January 04, 2007

SuperLiquor Wins Bid to Stay Open Later

Tonight I stopped by Super Liquor this evening shortly before 10 p.m. because it was still open. The owner told me that he won his petition to remain open until 10 p.m. because the ANC protest "didn't go through," which I interpret to mean that the protest failed due to a technical legal/procedural defect. No one showed up, he said.

So all of the hand-wringing over this was for naught. I will need to find out what technicality posed a problem so that, in the future, the merits of protests will be considered.

Ironically, I also discovered tonight that all of the other liquor stores in the area had closed at 9. Super Liquor's owner states that because the other owners live in Virginia, they close at 9 on the weekdays, 10 p.m. on the weekends.

It's Official

I was sworn in yesterday and this is my first post as the new commissioner. Naturally, I will need to transition to a different format for posting. So I am open to suggestions.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Metro Bus Driver Orders Man to Litter in Our Neighborhood

Tonight around 9:30 I was riding the 80 bus home. Shortly after the bus turned left onto North Capitol Street, the bus driver noticed that a passenger in the back of the bus possessed something, probably food or drink, prohibited by Metro regulations.

"You have to get rid of that," the bus driver told that man. "Throw it out the window." The man protested that he could get a ticket for littering. The bus driver replied "That's not my problem." The man then threw something out the window. A bit surprised, I said to the driver "you're littering in my neighborhood," but I left it at that. My experience with bus drivers has been that they are not interested in passenger commentary about Metro issues.

We ought to make littering every bus driver's problem. No doubt drivers are regularly confronted with the issue of someone eating or drinking on a bus. A trash receptical should be available somewhere on every bus. We have enough trash to deal with on North Capitol Street without bus drivers asking citizens to violate littering laws.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Justice for All, Even the Liquor Stores

At the ANC meeting last Tuesday, the Commission unanimously voted against a request by the owner of SuperLiquor located at 1633 North Capitol Street N.E. to extend the store hours from the current 9 p.m. closing time, to one hour later, 10 p.m.

This matter does not even appear on the official monthly meeting agenda distributed . . . hours before the meeting? The public had no official notice of this matter.

Cleopatra Jones introduced the motion to reject the application. She said she had spoken with or received comments or letters from constituents who opposed the request.

She didn't speak with the owner. The owner didn't have any notice of the ANC meeting or that it would be voting on his request. And, when I walked into his store shortly before 9 p.m. this evening, I was the first to inform him of what the ANC had done.

Iyob, the owner, opened his store approximately three months ago. In that time, he has transformed an ugly metal grate into a large, well-lit, pleasant window storefront. Someone threw a brick at the new display two weeks ago, shattering a pane of glass that he had since covered up in such a way as to make it unnoticable. The door to the store is well-lit and he says he has been diligent to keep all loiterers away. I have not seen any outside his store (they are all across the street at Yeong Fong, waiting for their orders to be filled).

Naturally, he was a little upset at the development. Does the government want to run him out of business? He would have liked to have told his side at the ANC meeting, but he didn't have any notice. He says that other similar stores already are open until 10 p.m. and he cannot compete if they are permitted to be open one hour later. He is concerned that his livelihood is threatened. Are the commissioners against small businesses, he asked.

I suggested to him that with several new commissioners taking office next month, that the ANC's method of conducting business would likely change. Liquor stores are not well-thought of in our neighborhood, due to some elements that they might attract. But before the Commission takes action adverse to any specific business, it ought to hear that business's side. The hearing date is December 4.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. I am currently spending Thanksgiving with my family, but will try to write up a recap of this past Tuesday's ANC meeting soon.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Comments Wanted: Where Should the Monthly Constitutent Meetings be Held?

The first prong of my platform is that I will hold monthly meetings with the residents of 5c-02.

So I'd like to hear from you about where those meetings should take place. And should it be at the same location every month, or should it change? For that matter, ANC 5C is also trying to answer these questions with respect to its official meetings.

Some ideas . . .

1) A room in the Harry Thomas Recreation Center

2) A room in one of our local churches. MPD meetings are often held at St. Martin's Church, for example.

3) Catania Bakery (the bakery will have to purchase chairs, but I think those folks would be willing to invest for the community) or some other similar establishment

4) A different resident each month could open his/her home to the neighbors.

5) A room in McKinley Tech High School

6) A room in Dunbar High School

7) The Artist Studio on O Street

8) In one of our parks (for example, the one at New York Avenue and First Street N.W.), if it is on a warm spring/summer day.

The advantage of changing venues is that some folks will be more likely to attend a meeting the closer it is located. The disadvantage is that everyone will have to be informed every month of the location and some amount of effort will be needed to discern the new location.

Please give the pro/cons, your ideas, and any suggests. If you would care to host a meeting in your home, please e-mail me at

Friday, November 17, 2006

A Preview of What is Ahead

And now for a word about the question "What now?"

I plan to continue this blog through the January 2, 2007 swearing-in ceremony. Keep in mind that I'm not commissioner yet, although I plan to begin implementing my plans.

I'm planning to host a Christmas Party, tentatively scheduled for December 9th. The orientation session for newly-elected commissioners will also be held that day.

This week's schedule includes . . .

The Eckington Civic Association is holding a meeting at 6:30 p.m. Monday at McKinley Tech High School. Guest speakers include Adrian Fenty and Harry Thomas, Jr.

The next Advisory Neighborhood Commission meeting is this Tuesday at 7 p.m., at the Harry Thomas Recreational Center on Lincoln Road N.E. (although the meeting notice and agenda have not been posted on the official website yet).

Thursday, November 09, 2006

A Thank You to Campaign Supporters

I would like to thank my campaign volunteers!

J.T. Engelhardt was a tremendous help throughout the campaign, helping me put out signs early on and towards the end. He also worked for three hours in the morning on election day and then came back in the evening.

Katie Nguyen helped throughout the campaign, including helping with signs and the Catania event, plus about seven hours on election day at Dunbar.

Joel Dubenitz spent about six hours navigating Home Depot and helping me get signs up in people's yards. And a big thank you to all of the people who let me place a sign in their yard.

Vittorio Pomante spent three hours helping to stuff envelopes for the Catania Bakery event, then came out for a couple of hours in the evening on election day.

Jerome Fernandez spent the entire day (13 hours) at Dunbar High School!

Pam Friedman served as a poll watcher in the morning and Stephen White served as a poll watcher late in afternoon/early evening.

John Skinner and Preston Bishop, who I met only days before election day, stood out in the rain for a fe
w hours in the evening handing out fliers to voters. Steve Rynecki showed up with fliers in the early evening when I began to run out.

Karen Alston and Carol Legard hosted meet-and-greets for me.
The folks at Catania Bakery were a joy to work with.

Chris Edmunds introduced me to folks in the artisian building on O Street, while David Roth rallied folks at the condo building located on New York Avenue.

Curtis Johnson sign-waved for a while at the polls and then allowed his SUV to be used as a big billboard near the polling place all day.

Finally, God was there the entire time, from the moment I knocked on my first door on P Street until the polls closed on election day.

I hope I didn't miss anyone. (One of these photos was taken by Katie at Dunbar High School, and the other by myself at the recreational center.)

Today is the Beginning of a New Era in Eckington-Truxton Circle

I want to thank everyone for their words of support. Now, I only hope that everyone won't disappear when it comes time to volunteer for the hard work needed to execute the principles set forth in my campaign platform.

November 8 is the first day of a new era in our neighborhood. This election was a little historic. Our neighborhood is 95% nonwhite and 95% nonRepublican. But in this nonpartisan race, I found acceptance from open-minded, open-hearted neighbors willing to reach beyond the barriers of race, class, and party that so often hold us back.

I spoke with at least 161 voters at their doorstep, and knocked on 350 doors after October 19. Prior to that, I had already knocked on those doors at least once before.

The one door I didn't knock on was that of Cleopatra Jones, but on election day we talked on and off at Precinct 75 over a period of 12 hours. We had not talked much at all before, and I obtained a much better understanding of the things she has done for this community.

One can't say nice things about one's opponent during an election because it doesn't get you elected. Know now that when I first read her four pages of accomplishments that she distributed, I was a little impressed. My priorities for the neighborhood are different, but she hasn't been sitting around twiddling her thumbs-- that is sort of the caricature.

The DCBOEE has released the precinct report (see also below). You'll note that I did far better in the southern precinct 19. I focused much of my attention there, at the expense of R and Quincy.

The southern part of the district is more dangerous, rougher, and poorer. It was my intention to reach out to every voter in our neighborhood. I was told that Hanover Place was my opponent's stronghold. The night before the election, one person after another on Hanover said I had their vote.

Two weeks ago, I was very tired of this campaign. I was also worried that I wouldn't have anyone to help me work the polls, but eight people stepped forward. I am very grateful for every volunteer, as well as to those individuals who contributed financially to my campaign.

Finally, I want to thank Ms. Jones for her service to the neighborhood. I’ll need a bit of time to recover from this election campaign, but I hope we can work together for a smooth transition sometime in the near future. Meanwhile, I hope everyone will be considering what role they will be playing in the renewal of our neighborhood.

* * * *

Precinct 19 (Dunbar High School)

ANC FOR SMD 5C02 (Final)

CLEOPATRA JONES 35 -- 32.71%
KRIS HAMMOND 65 -- 60.75%
Write In, if any 7 -- 6.54%
Total... 107 100.00%

Precinct 75 (Harry Thomas Recreational Center)

CLEOPATRA JONES 119 -- 47.04%

KRIS HAMMOND 132 -- 52.17%
Write In, if any 2 -- 0.79%
Total... 253 100.00%